Why Is My Water Level Dropping?
We can probably rule out the baby emptying your pond and unless you have a menagerie of animals who all enjoy regularly drinking from your pond, we can probably rule out that pets are causing your water levels to drop! But let’s have a look at some of the common causes of water loss.
Pond water levels dropping is a common problem that many pond owners come across and at first can seem quite worrying. Naturally, everybody’s first thought is “I have a leak in my pond” and “there must be a rip in the pond liner”. However, only 5% of suspected leaks turn out to be leaks, so don’t panic just yet!
There are a few different reasons that could be causing the water levels to drop and we will go through them below so that you can diagnose what is causing your water to disappear and fix it as soon as possible.
This is the most common (and most obvious) reason for water levels dropping although it may not seem possible as water levels can drop more than 1 inch per week. Depending on the time of year and where your pond is located in the garden, if it is exposed to long amounts of direct sunlight it is possible for significant amounts of water to evaporate.
The only way to avoid evaporation in your pond is to make sure you pond has shade. However, unless you had the hindsight to locate your pond in the shade when building it, the chances are that you have little to no shade and never will.
If you decide to top up your pond with the hosepipe, it is better to do this little and often to minimise the amount of chlorine entering the water. Rather than replenishing all of the water in one go, try adding a small amount every day. When adding the water, use the rose attachment on the hose to create a sprinkle rather than a poor, this way some of the chlorine will be burnt off before entering the water. If you do have to fill up the pond in one go, add a dose of Pond Klear after topping up to replenish bacterial levels.
Depending on what plants you keep in your pond and what time of year they flower, this can also contribute highly to water loss. If you have plants that bloom during the summer months they will need to absorb high levels of water, couple this with the natural evaporation in summer months and it is easy to see how water levels can drop.
There is no fix for this problem other than topping up the water as explained under the evaporation paragraph.
If you have a waterfall, water feature or fountain pond pump in your pond setup, these could be the culprit to your disappearing water. If they are not perfectly aligned, they can splash or spray small amounts of water out of your pond.
Spend a couple of minutes watching your waterfall, feature or fountain to see if you can see any obvious water splashes. If you see any splashes, adjust any rocks to direct water or change the flow rate to keep splashes to a minimum.
Leaks from Pumps, Filters & Plumbing
Check all fastenings on pump and filter pipework. These can sometimes be made of brittle plastic that overtime will degrade and possibly crack or split causing small leaks in pipework joints. If you do spot a leak coming from any of the pipework, replace the part as soon as possible to avoid any further leaks.
Check the filter media inside your filtration system as this can often become blocked if not cleaned regularly and can result in water overflowing from the filter box. If the filters are dirty, take them out and give them a quick spray with the hosepipe to wash away any dirt or algae. Some pond keepers recommend using pond water to clean the filters as the tap water from hosepipes can kill the bacteria. As bacteria specialists, we believe it is more detrimental to use good, bacteria filled pond water to clean the filters and that a hosepipe is much more effective.
Rips Tears & Cracks in The Liner
The final thing to look for is any splits, rips or cracks in your pond liner. To spot a leak, you will need to let your water level drop until it stops, at this point, it should make it easier for you to find the leak and repair it. Be careful when letting the water drain that it doesn’t drop too low. If it starts to get too low, you could start to expose your fish to predators and reduce the available oxygen levels in your water which are crucial to a fish’s health.
If your water starts dropping too low, re-home your fish whilst you repair the leak. When re-homing them, be sure to use water from your pond rather than tap water to reduce the chances of stress and illness in your fish.
- Pond Plants
- Leaking plumbing
- Damaged Pond Liner
All the above reasons can contribute to the loss of water in a pond and unfortunately it is something that is likely to happen throughout the year. When topping your pond up from the hose, ensure you use a rose attachment and hold the hose at waist height. This will help add oxygen in to the pond and burn off some of the chlorine from the tap water. Alternatively, you can use water from a water butt, either way, we recommend using Pond Equaliser to remove any harmful chemicals or heavy metals and to stabilise the water parameters of the added water.